Ribchester romps home in the Lockinge at Newbury

Ribchester and William Buick on their way to victory in the Lockinge
Ribchester and William Buick on their way to victory in the Lockinge

Ribchester was an impressive all-the-way winner of the Al Shaqab Lockinge Stakes at Newbury.

The Godolphin-owned four-year-old, trained by Richard Fahey and ridden by William Buick, kept finding more in front and was far too strong for the opposition in the first domestic Group One race of the season for older horses.

The 7-4 favourite kept up the gallop in admirable style to score by three and three-quarter lengths from the David Simcock-trained Lightning Spear (9-2).

Breton Rock, a stablemate of the runner-up, was another two and a half lengths away in third at odds of 25-1.

Buick said: "He's a very good horse, very versatile.

"Richard and his team at home have done a fantastic job with him.

"He's getting mentally better and physically stronger every day.

"If you are going to compete in these Group One races and be successful, you have to be the complete package.

"He's a horse I'm very, very happy to ride."

While most pundits expected Toscanini to be the pacemaker for his stablemate, he was slowly away and was not asked to make up the ground quickly.

That did not worry Buick, who was happy to let Ribchester stride out in front, with his old rival Galileo Gold in second place.

That was until the race got serious inside the final quarter of a mile as last season's 2000 Guineas winner wilted tamely out of contention.

In the style of a class horse, Ribchester found much more in the closing stages as he gave Godolphin an eighth Lockinge triumph.

Irish raider Somehow finished fourth, with Galileo Gold a disappointing fifth.